Yogic practices are ideally suited to support healthcare providers and prevent burnout. However, as experienced yoga therapist Carol Krucoff notes in a summary of a study on work-related injuries in plastic surgeons,

“Yoga is not a matter of ‘take this pose and call me in the morning.’”

The greatest benefits of yoga therapy arguably come from a consistent, integrated practice that includes elements that address all the levels of one’s physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual environment.

In “The Rx we were never taught to write,” Robyn Tiger, MD, C-IAYT, describes how serious burnout led her to yoga and eventually to sharing yoga therapy with other physicians:
“As a diagnostic radiologist, I could not have imagined anything more amazing than having the privilege of using “x-ray vision” to peer inside my patients’ bodies in search of the etiologies behind their symptoms and illnesses. But over time, I felt incredibly stressed, anxious, imbalanced, and overwhelmed, and I developed many symptoms and illnesses of my own, including migraines, tinnitus, vertigo, body pain, reflux, and intermittent paresthesias. My hands would actually go numb at the most inopportune times, including during breast biopsies. I could barely sleep. I was completely exhausted, and I was falling apart. I convinced myself I had a debilitating neurologic disease. Although hard to admit, I became completely burned out and even had suicidal thoughts. I consulted with several medical specialists, took many medications, saw a therapist and … I only got worse. Frightened for my own life, I knew I needed to find another avenue to improve my health. It wasn’t just for me. I owed it to my wonderful husband and children to find a way to get well.”
Dr. Tiger now advocates for education on effective self-care methods to be built into medical school from the very beginning.

A Few Short Practices Offered by IAYT-Certified Yoga Therapists to Support Healthcare Providers

Find a yoga therapist in your area here, and read about therapeutic yoga to manage compassion fatigue and yoga-inspired self-care ideas on our blog.